Opposition voiced to new Tesco store

2 September 2011

The Harrogate Chamber of Trade and Commerce (HCTC) have written to Harrogate Borough Council expressing great concern over the proposed plans for a new superstore Tesco in the town. The chamber have compiled an 18-page report that raises concerns in a number of areas and are urging that the plans be rejected.

The HCTC is formed of and represents local business’s in Harrogate. It has taken a key roll in many local issues such as improving rail links, car parking charge increases and town centre developments generally.

The Chamber have emphasised that they are not against a Tesco being built in Harrogate, but believe that this is not the right solution. They have also requested that we publish the document in full and the summary with the letter recently sent to the council.

Associated Story Tesco talks to Harrogate-News about their plans

To view the full report then follow this link (will open an adobe document file):



A copy of the letter from the Chamber to Harrogate Borough Council:


TO: All Harrogate Borough Council Planning Committee Members and Substitutes

The President, the Management Group and the active members of this Chamber have studied TESCO’s proposals and many supporting documents in great detail on several occasions and they have unanimously agreed that they should be rejected as damaging for Harrogate’s economy and potentially dangerous for local residents.
The Chamber strongly opposes Tesco’s revised Planning Application for the following reasons:

  1. Traffic Congestion
  2. Road Safety
  3. Gas Safety
  4. Retail Trade Impact
  5. Inadequate Mitigation measures
  6. Failure to consider alternative solutions

Our reasons for objecting under each heading are set out in this report, to which are appended some of the most critical extracts from relevant technical reports.

The current application will result in massive traffic problems so unless and until there are proposals which really tackle and solve this issue; this is not a suitable location for a supermarket.  There are also recognised serious safety hazards on this site due to the live gas holder and pipework that need removing entirely.

Even then we need effective measures to link the proposed new Store to the Harrogate Town Centre and to the District’s Market Towns in order to mitigate the potential damage to the established retail trade across this District.

We therefore urge the Harrogate Planning Committee to reject the current proposals on the following grounds:

  • Traffic congestion – on New Park roundabout, A59, A61 and cross-town
  • Road Safety – especially on Ripon Road and Ripon Way
  • Gas Safety – gas tank leakage; pipeline damage; cyanide residues
  • Retail Trade Impact – Jennyfield; Town Centre; Market Towns & villages


We are willing to sit down with TESCO and the Planning Officers to work out a solution that protects all the long term interests of Harrogate District businesses and residents – wherever they are located.   The desires of local residents for a very convenient Superstore should not outweigh the wider community interests.
Thank you for your consideration
Yours sincerely

Brian L Dunsby, Chief Executive & Hon Secretary


  1. I’m not opposed to the regeneration of the ugly
    Site my house currently looks out onto BUT what will be the impact
    On the value of my home (which I have just spent a fortune refurbishing)
    As I hear they are only going to put up a ‘partial’ line of trees
    So shoppers will be looking straight into my bedroom!! Also the added traffic down
    What is currently a peaceful road. Will there be a special scheme/compensation
    For those directly affected??

  2. I’m sorry but the actions of the Harrogate Chamber of Commerce are selfish and controlling!! Repeated surveys have shown there is a majority support from Harrogate consumers for a Tesco store of this size. We are living in circumstances where all are having to carefully conserve limited incomes and Tesco is well known for good products at great value prices.
    The Chamber of Commerce are purtely trying to suppress competition for businesses in the town and their toting the gas-safety argument is merely an emotive excuse.
    I really hope Harrogate Council keep the best interests of the majority of their voters in mind and give Tesco the go-ahead.
    As the Tesco representative said, they have more preparation work to do on this site and it would be commercial suicide for them to do anything which would put any customers or residents at risk in Harrogate or anywhere.
    So HCC stop interfering with progress … many people need Tesco products and prices to help manage household budgets!

  3. I’d rather look over a well maintained Tesco site than a derelice eyesore. Why will the value of your house drop? I’d be happy to live there. And when I come shopping at Tesco, rest assured, the contents of your bedroom won’t interest me in the least.
    Harrogate majority want Tesco, so the council had a duty to supply, with necessary planning conditions as appropriate.
    I laugh at the gas safety concerns, they really are a red herring of whale proportions.

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